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Because I’m happy happy happy..

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by scotchcrotch, Jan 9, 2020.

  1. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
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    I’m going thru somewhat of a midlife crisis at the moment.

    I turned 40 last month and am struggling to define happiness on my second leg of life.

    How do you define happiness? Is it wealth? Family? Something else?

    I have an amazing family and a business that’ll keep food on my family’s plate for at least half a decade. What’s your definition of happiness?
     
    Revengeofthenerds likes this.
  2. walt

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    I'll be 46 and sometimes I feel like I've gotten a grip on it in the last couple years. I think the biggest thing for me was shedding the bullshit from the past and focusing on what's important NOW. Also, my priorities have changed overall, I feel better able to discern what's important and what's not. Then letting that which isn't important fall to the wayside.

    I'm making about half of what I used to make and let me tell you, I've never been happier. Sure I'm not providing as much money towards the household as I used to, but I've been sitting here thinking about it and I think I'm providing something better. I'm more... present somehow. My improved mental state, being happier, is in turn making my family's lives happier. The fact that my wife gets to come home to supper on the stove, the groceries put away and housework largely done doesn't hurt, I'm sure.

    Beyond that, I can look around and say I have everything I need. My family, both here and extended family are all healthy and well. I have a good group of friends. Our house is warm and the roof doesn't leak. I can stand on our front porch, look around, and my chest swells in pride and appreciation for what we have. Sure there's other things I want, but I have every thing I need.

    What else do you need?
     
  3. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
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    Security? Absolutely. But I’m all about the next challenge, being productive and creating new obstacles to conquer. If I won the lottery tomorrow and never had to work again I’d have all the security in the world. But security is only one facet of happiness.
     
  4. walt

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    For me it's the exact opposite, perhaps because of my early career path and how, looking back, I know it affected and changed me. I spent those years working 60-75 hours a week ( that was scheduled ) until our first son came along. Then I decided working all those hours to make that money wasn't as important, so as years went by I've been able to whittle down my work week. We do well, thanks to my wife's career, but we still live within our means, unlike a lot of Americans these days. We've made sure to invest or save for "what if".

    I guess my timeline for adulting went kinda reverse to what it did for many my age. I'm still productive though, just different than a lot of people.
     
  5. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
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    I understand where you’re coming from. I burn out on work once or twice a year and need to step back and reevaluate my priorities to keep my sanity. Luckily I own my own business so I have the flexibility to do that.

    Challenges and obstacles don’t have to be professional. I recently started training for a 5k. I think it’s in our very nature to strive for more, both professionally and personally. I’ve had times where I step back and decompress when I get tunnel vision. But it’s temporary.
     
  6. walt

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    Ah, I misunderstood, I thought you were talking more professionally. Yes, we definitely need something to keep us sharp. If I don't have some new hair brained thing going, whether it's a new website idea, a writing project, or bringing home yet more livestock to raise, I go nuts. And I have more time to immerse myself in it now, which makes me that much happier.
     
  7. Frank

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    The older I get the more I find the brain/body connection to be important. I know if I’m consistently working out I’m at peace instead of antsy, this alone might not work for someone like you that is probably a lot more goal driven so you may have to track progress, or maybe the dopamine rush alone is enough, or maybe you already workout consistently and have gained nothing from my post.
     
  8. thevoice

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    Lately my happiness has been directly tied to three non-financial factors:

    - Health: Since June 5th I've lost 32 pounds. The goal is to lose 50 pounds in a year. 18 pounds to go and 19 weeks left to get there. I could go on and on about how much happier and healthier I feel now that I've started to prioritize my health. Both mentally and physically I'm arguably the healthiest I've ever been, even when the scale was showing smaller numbers in my late teens and early 20's.

    - Relationships: Some of my favourite moments with my fiancé over the past six months have been when we've just been sitting at our kitchen table playing crib with some chill music playing in the background. Sometimes we'll drink wine, and sometimes we won't. But it's been nice having an activity that allows us to talk, flirt and be ourselves with one another.

    - The Dog: I can't stress enough how relaxed and at ease I feel when I'm walking the dog. Fresh air, exercise and bonding with the little guy has been a genuine, un-expected source of happiness for me since we got him in December, 2018.
     
  9. downndirty

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    I'll chime in, since I am over 5 years since a suicide attempt.

    1. Sleep. You absolutely need sleep for sound mental health. Getting less than 6 hours a night will upfuck my entire week.
    2. Sugar. Keeping it to a minimum has helped me lose weight, make healthier choices and have more consistent energy.
    3. Prioritizing quality over quantity when it comes to relationships. This means simply not tolerating fuckheads, setting boundaries with family members and coworkers, and just being honest with some people on what role they play in my life.
    4. Doing some shit that doesn't involve 'content'. About once a week or so, I will go do some shit that isn't a movie, book, game or tv show. I've done a Thai cooking class, trampoline park, yoga class, it literally doesn't matter. It's some shit, and it's not in front of a screen, and I'm interacting with people I don't know. For me, it was extremely easy to retreat home and let the time pass cleaning, cooking, reading and being functionally shut in. Then, inevitably around an hour before I go to sleep I am clawing my eyes out bored and sad, and I couldn't understand why. It took a few weeks before it dawned on me that everything I had done revolved around watching a game, film or show and that was inherently unfulfilling.
    5. Don't eat/drink coffee alone. Yes, this costs more. But I made it a point to invite someone, literally anyone, when I go get coffee or when I go out to eat.
    6. No guilt over food/exercise. When I have ice cream for dinner, I can work that shit off. No point in beating myself up over it. Same with not hitting an exercise target or not having every day be PR day.
    7. Books over tv. TV over movies. Games only when I am brain dead, or on the phone. Just recognizing how my brain & emotions respond to different stimuli and the role they play in my every day life was important.
    8. GO TO FUCKING THERAPY. It was explained to me, it's like surgery: it's going to hurt worse while you're there, but it's necessary to fix the shit, recover and move on.
    9. Finance. I am cosmically fortunate I get to do something I am passionate about and it pays well enough for me to live very comfortably. I have a firm belief that so much of our troubles are driven by economic insecurity (who has enough money to retire, afford a home? will my job still exist in 5 years? 20? how will I take care of my older family members) and I am incredibly lucky. If at all possible, make your money put your mind at ease.
    10. Track your shit. Keep tabs on your diet, sleep, exercise, sex and feelings. I spend maybe 5 minutes a day jotting stuff down in a spreadsheet, and it's been incredibly insightful as to what works for me (CBD) and what doesn't (porn and gummy bears).
     
  10. TJMax

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    It's a journey, not a destination. I'm 44 and have always been single. I don't make commitments I can't keep. Maybe my midlife crisis will be a wife and kids, while my friends from school are having grandkids...